The Shower of Doom

I have the most aggravating shower. Whenever I turn it on, the water is scalding. I freak out for a few moments, trying to remember which way is left and which way is right, and chanting "Lefty loosey, righty tighty" (because I can never remember how to turn taps on and off), before I finally gather my wits enough to twist the left handle a wee bit to the right. Just a few millimetres does the trick.

Aaah... Refreshing, cool water comes pouring down to soothe my just-been-boiled-alive self, and I begin humming the overture to a show-tune. Yes, showering is nice.
But not for long.
Two seconds later, I find myself in freezing water: it's so cold that it literally knocks the breath out of me. I scramble for the tap handle and twist it frantically. How could one millimetre have done this? I barely even turned the tap, and the shower went all Arctic on me! It's quite the drama, and it repeats itself every single day. On -- scream --twist -- ahh -- scream -- twist... over and over it occurs, creating a viscious cycle that I battle daily.
But why exactly am I sharing this profoundly edifying and enlightening experience with you? Well, there's more to this story than meets the eye. I've realised, over time, that it's a bit of an illustration of my life and the way I sin.
I fool myself every single day. I tell God, "This is it. I will not commit this wrong ever again. I will not make any excuses for it. There is nothing in the world that can justify it, so I repent of it for life." And for the first few minutes, I do. I'm fired-up, living the "hot" life, enjoying the resolve that I feel as I return to the quiet, peaceful narrow path that leads to my Lord. And then something catches my eye. It's about as important as an atom compared to the God I serve, but somehow, it grabs my attention and I become absolutely overwhelmed with desire for it.
One tentative step to the right. One millimetre. It can't do any harm. And the next thing I know, I am absolutely cold.
I might be wrong about this, as I don't know the Bible by heart, but I don't think that God ever talks of Christians regressing -- in his eyes, we either walk forward or fall away. There's no such thing as a millimeter when it comes to sin -- the tinest veering off of the path turns the soul to ice. We think, it's no big deal, this is only a fraction of a sin, but, when it comes to evil, an inch quickly turns into a mile.
Sometimes, I can't stand the heat of living for Christ 100%, and I decide to tone it down just a little -- just be one puny percent more like the rest of the world. Surely it won't change the temperature much. So I wake up in the morning and think, I'll read my Bible a little later, after I do my hair. Not reading the Bible is out of the question, but, in the mad rush that ensues when I realise I'm late for school, my first thought quickly morphs into, Okay, I'll read it after school. After school, when I'm starving and have tons of homework, it's suddenly not that big of a stretch to think, Not tonight. I'll read my Bible tomorrow. Ouch! Do you see how that happened? In the early morning, I would have been shocked at the thought of not reading my Bible all day, but, millimeter by millimeter, that thought becomes acceptable to me, and before I know it, I am left cold.
Let's look at it another way. I've never skydived before, and even the thought of jumping from a diving board at the pool scares me. But if I leap a few times from my kitchen counter, I'm suddenly no longer so afraid of jumping from the top of the play-structure. And when I take that risk, a diving board isn't so scary anymore. After jumping from the highest diving-board in the pool, will I still be as afraid of sky-diving as I used to be? All it takes is that first jump from the kitchen counter, and a bunch of possibilities are opened. With many things in life, that's a good thing. With sin, it's not.
My daily shower-gone-insane experience is a good reminder to enjoy the fiery life that God wants me to live, and to never cave into the idea that a little millimeter won't change anything. Even the smallest steps have big consequences.
In the words of Casting Crowns,

It's a slow fade when you give yourself away
It's a slow fade when black and white have turned to gray
Thoughts invade, choices are made, a price will be paid
When you give yourself away
People never crumble in a day

The journey from your mind to your hands
Is shorter than you're thinking
Be careful if you think you stand
You just might be sinking...

Image from JupiterImages.

3 comments:

Abigail Kraft said...

Great illustration! It's so cool how God can teach us lessons and give us things to reflect on from things as small as the shower. Very thought provoking post...I'll definitely be thinking about it over the next several days. Keep burning bright and hot for Christ!

In His arms,
--Abigail

ShutterflyH said...

I found the link to your blog on Kindred Spirit Network. You're a great writer!! Keep up the good work! Your blog layout is cute, too. God bless!

Oksana said...

Hi Abigail and Shutterfly! Thanks for stopping by and leaving your thoughts. :)


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I'm Oksana—Communication major, shutterbug, occasional blogger, incessant doodler, graphic design geek, and writer of sentimental prose. I am quite content to spend an afternoon with a pencil, a few blank Moleskine pages, and a playlist of indie folk. I love musical theatre, black-&-white movies, and Eastern European illustration. Conversations with strangers make my day. When it rains, I make a beeline for my mug of green tea and stack of 19th-century fiction. I'm vegetarian about 98% of the time. I'm extremely awkward and rather nerdy. I love the sea. My name means 'hosanna' and I'm having the time of my life living to praise the One who set me free.

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